The brother of former Massachusetts Sen. Scott Brown was arrested in Old Lyme after investigators said he was seen walking with a gun on the streets of Old Lyme while impersonating a cop.
Police said 46-year-old Bruce Browne, of Wolcott, was seen by a resident walking down Sea View Drive Thursday evening. The caller stated to police that Browne was wearing military-style clothing and had a gun. The caller also stated they saw the same man earlier in the day operating a "police-type vehicle."
Police said Browne apparently commandeered a boat saying he was an U.S. Coast Guard official and pulled other boaters over off the shore of Point O Wood to check their registration.
"He was stopping boats saying he was member of the Coast Guard, checking them out," said one boat owner.
After pulling over two boats and a jet skier, one boat owner said it didn't feel right so he took Browne back to the dock.
Officers were able to locate that vehicle, a blue 2004 Crown Victoria, at a house on Sea View Drive. According to police, the vehicle was equipped with hideaway lights and antennas mounted on the trunk.
Police arrested Browne, who stated he was the registered owner of the vehicle.
Browne also admitted to walking along Sea View Drive earlier in the day wearing a black nylon gun belt with a loaded 9 mm pistol in a holster, according to police.
Police located three loaded 9 mm handguns in Browne's vehicle in plain view. They also found a black nylon belt with two sets of handcuffs, 12 fully loaded magazines, an expandable baton and more than 200 rounds of ammunition.
Police also said they found a black tactical bulletproof vest with the world "POLICE" on it and a silver metal TSA badge.
Wolcott Police Chief Edward Stephens confirmed to Channel 3 Eyewitness News on Friday morning that Browne is the brother of former Massachusetts Sen. Scott Brown. Stephens also acknowledged that their names are spelled differently, but was unsure as to why.
Brown held the United States Senate seat after Sen. Ted Kennedy died, and lost to Sen. Elizabeth Warren in the last election.
The former United States senator talked from outside his home in Massachusetts.
"Obviously very serious charges, something he's going to have to answer to," Brown said. "We don't see him too often. He's in Connecticut and pretty much estranged from the family, but I feel bad for his kids and his wife."
One young girl said she interacted with him at the fiance's cottage.
"I thought he was a normal police officer," said the girl, who wished not to be identified. "I just talked to him and these are actual handcuffs, I said 'really' and he had cuffed me jokingly."
Browne was arrested and charged at Connecticut State Police Troop F in Westbrook with impersonating a police officer, breach of peace, interfering with a police officer and possession of a dangerous weapon in a motor vehicle.
The Coast Guard will be conducting its own investigation into the incident.
Browne was released on a $50,000 bond and will appear in New London Superior Court on Aug. 22.
Eyewitness News tried Browne at his home Friday, but the station was unable to get in touch with him.
Copyright 2013 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.
Monday, September 1 2014 2:00 AM EDT2014-09-01 06:00:48 GMT
Severe thunderstorms across the Northeast have slowed operations at airports, wreaked havoc at outdoor sporting and musical events and sent people scurrying from a beach in New York after three men there were...More >>
Severe thunderstorms across the Northeast on Sunday slowed operations at airports, wreaked havoc at outdoor sporting and musical events in New York and Philadelphia and sent people scurrying from a beach after three men...More >>